Farm from a Box: Is it time for food production by the masses?
The future of agriculture and our food systems is uncertain. Long and complex supply networks no longer appear the obvious way to guarantee either long-term economic or environmental prosperity, while improvements in terms of yield for mass production agriculture have gradually been reduced, all while associated concerns relating to soil degradation and food health increase. Farm from a Box is a startup that may not have all the answers, but it’s an initiative that might just be pushing the right buttons in the current context.
Solar panels for power, irrigation pumps, equipment for water filtration, an on-board computer for soil monitoring and a full array of farming tools, Farm from a Box, which is delivered as a freight designed to be placed adjacent to a two-acre growing space, is designed to contain everything that a small, off-grid farm needs to function.
Originally, it was developed as a rapid response to a transitional food production system, for disaster relief – possibly as a substitute for importing and distributing food for long periods of time – or scenarios where there is no grid that can be connected into and where resource maximisation is absolutely vital.
However, it is a concept located at an interesting point in time where there are increasing concerns about resource limitations and food production. A large percentage of the world’s farms are smaller than one hectare, but go unirrigated because of a lack of access to power. The Farm from a Box innovation uses solar power to provide drip irrigation delivering small water and fertiliser droplets to the base of crops – a technique that also reduces dependence upon rains and enables a larger and more diverse farm to develop.
Learn more about the initiative and find out more about the project from the following sources: